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A varicocele is an abnormal enlargement of the pampiniform venous plexus in the scrotum.
This plexus of veins drains the testicles. The testicular blood vessels originate in the abdomen and course down through the inguinal canal as part of the spermatic cord on their way to the testis.
Upward flow of blood in the veins is ensured by small one-way valves that prevent backflow. Defective valves, or compression of the vein by a nearby structure, can cause dilatation of the testicular veins near the testis, leading to the formation of a varicocele. Varicocele is known as one of the main causes for male infertility and can be treated by a surgery or non-surgical treatments.